Ask a question first

Artemy Lebedev of Designer’s Block articulates the problem we’ve discovered after diving into big data:

There is no way to think up an original and extraordinary design—it can only come as a result of pursuing a given task. In the same way running down a list of words is different from making a narrative.

As FlowingData adds:

This applies to visualization too. When you don’t have a question to answer or a simple wonderment about something, you end up staring at a bunch of numbers with no clue what to do with them. Want to test this out? Go to data.gov and make something useful.

via Visualizing data: ask a question first.

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